Running Start is operated by an unpaid volunteer Board of Directors.
President: Samantha Novak Hosmer
Samantha started with Running Start in 2015 as a Beginner in the program. After years of taking care of others, she decided it was time to take the brave leap and focus on taking care of herself. She was paired with fellow board member (and now lifelong friend) Shari Ashley as her Personal Motivator, and together they trained for her first 5k. From there, Sam went on to support three other women in the program, before becoming a co-program manager and board member for Running Start. She loves sharing the program with others, and watching the Running Start family grow! Building community is one of Samantha’s favorite things. She also loves camping, hiking, knitting, and paddleboarding. She lives in Erie, CO with her two kids, husband, and a menagerie of animals. She works as a special ed paraeducator at the local middle school, and loves having summers off to dedicate to her kids, Running Start, and traveling.
Vice President: Open Position
Secretary: Kriste Peoples
Kriste Peoples is a meditation teacher with a love of being in green spaces and exploring the application of mindfulness off the mat. And when she’s not out running, hiking, or otherwise adventuring along Colorado’s Front Range, she’s likely writing about it (or recovering with carbs in a local eatery). She can also be spotted offering talks about engagement in nature, gently nudging others to take up the cause of fun in the outdoors.
Treasurer: Sarah Vernon-Brunner
Sarah Vernon-Brunner has served on the Running Start board and been the Treasurer since 2016. Running and fitness has always played an important role in Sarah’s life, from her early days as a volleyball player and now as a runner, so she truly believes in the mission of Running Start. Professionally, Sarah was the President of Skirt Sports and after 14 years there, she is now managing the finance and operations for the Colorado High School Activities Association. Sarah lives with her husband and two busy boys in Superior.
Board Member: Georgie Zelenak
Georgie Zelenak is a Colorado native. She received degrees in geophysics from Colorado School of Mines and Scripps Institution of Oceanography prior to leading field crews and supporting science programs at sea. Georgie never considered herself an athlete and for years her physical activity was limited to whatever movement was required at work. After marrying her wonderful husband and taking a desk job managing seafloor mapping data at CU Boulder, Georgie had energy to burn and decided to try running. It was thrilling to discover that there is a space for plus sized runners regardless of pace, shape, or size. In 2021 she joined Running Start as a personal motivator.
Board Member: Jen Kenfield
Board Member: JoAnne Vaughn
Board Member: Kim Ovalle
Board Member: Kelsey Pavlidis
Kelsey Pavlidis has lived in Fort Collins, Colorado for the last 8 years. She earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology from Luther College, and went on to pursue her Masters of Social Work at Colorado State University. Kelsey is currently an LCSW practicing in Fort Collins, CO. Kelsey formerly worked for community mental health, and in the last year she made the shift to working in the healthcare sector supporting integrative care. Kelsey started her running and movement journey through the Running Start program in 2019, and went on to serve as a personal motivator and regional leader in 2020 before joining the board.
Board Member: Jaime Archer
Jaime Saunders Archer is originally from Southern California, but has lived in Boulder for over 20 years. She has a bachelor’s in art history from Stanford University and a master’s in art history from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Jaime worked in education for over 10 years as a museum educator, tutor, substitute teacher, and elementary school teacher. She is currently a stay-at-home mom and the owner of an online craft and nature photography business. Jaime was a Running Start beginner in 2019. This is her first year as a Running Start board member.
Board Member: Molly Schaff
Board Member: Stephanie Cahill
Board Member: Susi Irwin
Susi Irwin has lived in Colorado for the last 18 years. A native of New Jersey, she moved to Colorado to pursue her Masters of Fine Arts at Naropa University in Boulder in 2003 after earning her Bachelor of Arts in English from Radford University. Wary of never being a student again, she went on to earn her Master of Arts in Literature from Regis University. After years of part time teaching, and working in technology, she attended the Turing School of Software & Design to study Back-End Engineering. By day she is a Software Engineer and by night she is a Fiddle playing, sweater knitting, run-at-her-own pace girl. She is wife to an extraordinary husband and mom to two wonderful children. Susi is a 2020 Graduate of the Running Start Program and served as a Personal Motivator in 2021.